Mr Starkey [headline snipped – see update]

Posted by Tim Ireland at March 17, 2009

Category: Old Media, The Political Weblog Movement, The War on Stupid

This entry was posted on
Tuesday, March 17th, 2009
9:05 am and is filed
under Old Media, The Political Weblog Movement, The War on Stupid.

[UPDATE 13 Sep 2009 – A few non-vital chunks of this article have been generously snipped as a courtesy. All snips are marked in square brackets.]

“I was… I basically… I basically uncovered all the films. With…. a professor whose cousin, Sherard, is the British Ambassador to Afghanistan…” – Glen Jenvey

“Mike went to the MI5 in two thousand and… I think he went in 2006… ‘cos I arranged a meeting… Um… for Mike to go and visit MI5 and hand over tapes.” – Glen Jenvey

1. The man identified in the audio as the cousin of Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles is not a professor, but a lecturer.

2. The mystery cousin and ‘Mike’ are the same person

3. And his name is Mike Starkey


Thanks to this useful link to the Cowper-Coles family tree from Richard Bartholomew, we know that Michael W. Starkey is indeed a cousin of Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles, former ambassador to Afghanistan and now envoy from the UK to Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Michael Starkey is also the younger brother of Sir John Philip Starkey, 3rd Baronet of the Starkey Baronets. Sir John Starkey was formerly on the executive committee for Conservative MP Patrick Mercer. [snip-related UPDATE: Sir John Starkey was reportedly last on the executive committee over 30 years ago before Patrick Mercer became an MP, but Mercer confirms that they still knock heads politically]

Damn! How did we get back to Patrick Mercer again? No matter, you can read of John Starkey’s displeasure with Patrick Mercer joining Brown’s big tent when there was talk of deselection over the matter. There’s more here.


Glen Jenvey

So, here we have Glen Jenvey, a borderline if not outright fantasist whose only talent judging from the audio/interview is the patience to sit in one place for a very, very long time to catch files and messages that are only live/exchanged for short periods of time.

Fine, the police/authorities maybe don’t have the manpower to do this a lot or at all, but they do at least know what evidence management is, and Jenvey appears totally blind to it.

For all the evidence he claims to have collected and the arrests/convictions he has taken credit for, Mr Jenvey cannot produce a single example where he, or his evidence, sees the inside of a courtroom.

Something is wrong with Mr Jenvey, his evidence, and/or the manner in which he collects/delivers it.

The police, I imagine, regard him to be a bit of a joke, and/or a right royal pain in the arse.

But Jenvey can’t or won’t allow himself to see this; instead, even when he is threatened with arrest, in his mind it is the fault of inept police, overworked systems, useless, corrupt or politically-correct governments, and even the perceived threat of civil fucking war.

Pardon my language, but this man’s fantasies are clearly interfering with our nation’s security and Western security interests across the globe.

Here, by way of example, is an extract from the recently-authenticated audio of that interview where he blabbed and blabbed and blabbed about a year ago, because he was too busy bragging to think straight (or is an even bigger idiot than I took him for):

“The Abu Hamza videos led to the actual conviction and.. of… of… James Ujaama, because I uploaded them the day before he went to court. They hadn’t been shared by the FBI and the American Embassy who already had those… um… those tapes. See, it was the first time the Seattle FBI had actually had seen James Ujaama sat on a platform next to Abu Hamza, and they were struggling with the case and even struggling to keep him in prison. So if I hadn’t’ve uploaded the original page of ‘Al-Qaida Exposed’… videos.. um… basically… James Ujaama would’ve got off scot free. Probably, the snowball effect that then led to Abu Hamza extradition and case being built, which Ujaama in his plea-bargaining helped the FBI build, would never have happened… and the police in this country arrested Abu Hamza on an American extradition (“right?” iaudible) and then they tripped over… boxes of (VHS) videos similar to the ones that I uploaded. That I’d given them several years before.” – Glen Jenvey

Videos *similar* to the ones from several years before, If we can believe his claims about what he has and has not sent into the authorities. (Elsewhere, Jenvey has claimed prior knowledge of 9/11. What a pity the poor deluded fool didn’t think to make sandwiches or something when the police just didn’t listen.)

The action he describes above – releasing ‘evidence’ already rejected by authorities to the public a day before a trial – may be legal (just), but I can’t see it pleasing anyone doing the hard work of making a clean conviction stick.

No, all I can see is a yappy pup who continually spooks the game because he wants so much to be in on the hunt.

And we can only hope that his poking Muslim communities with a stick and inventing evidence when this tactic doesn’t produce any is a recent development.

There were some serious excesses during T.W.A.T. (The War Against Terror), so I’m willing to cut people some slack here and there, but everyone who trusted this guy to any extent at any time must be feeling pretty bloody stupid by now, especially if they put any faith in his claims to be a terror expert or professional spy.

Just for starters, professional spies do not pose as reporters. Well, they may do, but they generally try not to get caught doing it and don’t brag to reporters about doing it, even if they think it’s off the record.

Now, normally somebody like Jenvey wouldn’t be too much of a problem; the police and security personnel are well equipped to handle amateur sleuths, bigots and fantasists, but they are not going to have an easy time when interfering tosspots have access to diplomatic and parliamentary channels that work with those tosspots to promote in the media (a) themselves, and (b) evidence that the police have already rejected as unreliable/unusable.

I’ll need to stress this point, as it’s bound to come up; in those cases where Jenvey is on the trail of an actual extremist, this only makes things worse, *especially* when he goes public with what he knows ahead of any prosecution, making the task of police and security service that much harder:

It’s not rocket science; Jenvey’s much-heralded evidence is less to do with the quiet types who collect fertiliser and play with trains and mostly about extremists and/or shouty people (and/or their supporters) being careless and volunteering/recording/sharing evidence. Jenvey waving it about before anyone has a chance to prosecute risks alerting them to the danger of arrest and driving them and their circle deeper underground. There’ll be no shutting some of these people up, but it’s a sure bet that Jenvey’s clumsy blundering into one nest or another (or worse, poking it with a stick to extract ‘evidence’) does more to help extremists than the qualified professionals tasked with monitoring them.

Michael Starkey

Without Michael Starkey, Jenvey would not have enjoyed this level of access to Conservative MP and former Shadow Minister for Security Patrick Mercer, or former ambassador to Afghanistan Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles.

[snip-related UPDATE – While Starkey admits that Jenvey may have dropped his name when doing so, he contends that Jenvey introduced himself to Patrick Mercer well after they had met. He is also “unhappy” with the way Jenvey mentions his cousin in the audio, and does not regard that reference to be proper or correct. Please keep this contention in mind when reading the closing paragraphs.]

Without this access and the connections/credibility that came with association with these gentlemen, there is no way Jenvey would have been covered beyond the tabloids, if at all… and there’s certainly no way that Jenvey would have survived his (hopefully) recent period of fabrication, because the first thing that got wheeled out privately when questions were asked about Jenvey was a reassuring endorsement from Patrick Mercer, former Shadow Minister for Security.

And never mind the access and credibility, Jenvey doesn’t have the brains to keep a modest conspiracy together; his reliance on primitive and pointless bullying alone even at this stage makes that crystal clear.


Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles and Patrick Mercer


Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles and Patrick Mercer may wish to play dumb [snip], but this doesn’t put them in a position where they can later walk away clean and/or with any credibility.

No, the last chance for that is this morning, and their best bet is to take this last chance to Back. Away. From. Teh Jenvey.

Otherwise, they risk copping some if not all of the political fallout from this little game with matters of national security:

“If I don’t think the cops are taking me seriously… or not acting on information given over to them or MI5… we bypass them and I will use one of my number of diplomatic contacts… or it will go to Sherard. And if that fails, I then go to the press.” – Glen Jenvey

To summarise that once more; when the police do not regard certain evidence to be useful/usable for some reason, they will be bypassed and high-placed contacts within our diplomatic corps will be put to work to see if justice can’t be meted out by some other means. If those avenues fail, it will be time for trial by media.

This is not a valid, helpful, or constructive arrangement, and it’s time to bring it to an end.


  1. Guy Gooberman says

    A hat-trick of exceptional posts Tim!

  2. Manic says

    Don't expect a 4th like this; I'm pooped!:o)

  3. mikkimoose says

    This chap is hardly Jenvey's only accomplice.See for instance 'Neil Doyle'ttp:// is "An expert on extremists on the Internet.'" and "has pioneered a new and vital form of Internet-based investigative journalism which has enabled him to penetrate the dark heart of online fundamentalism.'" Sound familiar?Neil can be hired for between £2k and £4k a pop.He worked with Jenvey on Hamza:…Jenvey even says Doyle had no involvement:…"in fact it was not neil doyle who led to operation to get video's and information out of finsbury park mosque ,but glen jenvey working for the intelligence services of a common wealth country. the british are not that clever"The question for me is: 'how much of what Jenvey says is true, and how much of it is lies?'Here he is sending an email to the President of the USA warning him:"DEAR SIR. I WISH TO INFORM YOU OF THE INTERNATIONAL TERROR LINK'S BRTWEEN THEIRA AND 30 OTHER TERROR GRUPS AROUND THE WORLD. MR G WEBB.UK. PLEASE HELP."Surely a spy would not be sending emails to the public email address.He's ridiculed here for the description of him as "a freelance counterintelligence investigator from Wiltshire"…leading Jenvey to reveal his superhero tax-free spy status:"hi. to be fair i don't have to pay tax as a spy its all tax free! i first worked for the sri lankan secret service called the N.I.B.S. abit for russia,india,yemen, and a fw others.. spies dont pay tax. and can find anything that is said about them… GOD BLESS AMERICA! by the way abu hamza should be in american jail soon glen!"A more literate respondent suggests this is BS"But TBox does have a point about the taxes.. I happen to have been close to a few in the intel community and know that spies pay tax. Even if its filed under their "cover" jobs."So Jenvey turns up the James Bond story a notch:'hi spies do not pay tax. i remember sat with the senior russian naval attache a few years ago having a drink. and a suite case runner came into the embassy at kensington palace gardens london. this person was selling the whole of the british armed forces and civil services tax records. while i was having a drink.up-set good whiskey! their did notbuy it as they all already have it! so spies dont pay my circles cash but not as much in the movies… by the way abu hamza mob has sent hundreds of death threats already to me and im a police witness this must be against the law and he should be arrested? can anyone advice on british law on jihadi's threating a police offical witness can he be arrested…?glen'"english is not my best subject. but look at this link and you understand why abu hamza call's my sites mossad on the internet… bu the way not just russian i know most of the military attache in london and most arab one's are waiting for abu hamza terrorists refugees to return home for trail and death!"The commenter, who possibly thinks Jenvey is a Russian spy, adds:"Oh, good. You're foreign. I was afraid you were one of America's undereducated irresponsible youths. I suppose every nation gets them."He adds later"Your spelling is fine; it's your grammar that could use work. But even if it takes more effort on my part than normal, I can read and understand it, which is all I can reasonably expect of people who have English as a secondary language. In fact, knowing it's your second language, I think you're doing a damn fine job with your english. It's those natives who are too lazy to keep up with English as their primary language that make me angry."Regarding Jenvey's discretion, one of the comments adds"Not only do they [spies] not pay tax, it looks like they dont keep secrets anymore either."How much of Jenvey's story is true? It's quite hard to say. Presumably he knows some of these people, but other claims to know people seem unlikely given his emails sent to public-facing email addresses (e.g., to the US Defense Attaché).

  4. Manic says

    "hi. to be fair i don't have to pay tax as a spy its all tax free!"(quietly adds HMRC to list of authorities to contact)Thanks, mm.I've just read some of Neil Doyle's book 'Terror Tracker' and it reads to me like the work of a guy taken in by Jenvey's bullshit. I'll chase him for a statement later.

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